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Ocean Rig Drillship to Drill for Chariot Offshore Namibia

Chariot Oil & Gas Limited, the Africa focused independent oil and gas exploration company, has, together with its partner Enigma Oil & Gas (Pty) Limited, reached an agreement with Ocean Rig UDW Inc. to use the Ocean Rig Poseidon drillship for drilling of the Kabeljou (2714/6-1) well on the Nimrod prospect, offshore Namibia.

The drillship is expected to arrive on location in July 2012, after its current contract expires. The drilling operations will commence shortly after the arrival.

The Nimrod prospect is located in the Orange Basin in Southern Block 2714A where Chariot has a 25% equity interest. The Kabeljou well is expected to take approximately 2 months to drill. The drilling location is 77 km offshore Namibia in 360 metres of water with an estimated total drilling depth of 3,100 metres true vertical depth subsea (“TVDss”).

This is the second well to be drilled in Chariot’s 4 to 5 exploration well programme offshore Namibia.

Paul Welch, CEO of Chariot, commented:

“We are very pleased to be advancing with our drilling programme and eagerly anticipate the spud of the Kabeljou well with our partners. Nimrod is one of the biggest prospects due to be drilled worldwide this year and we look forward to being able to update the market with further news on this hugely significant well in due course.”


Chariot Spuds Tapir South Prospect Offshore Namibia


by  Chariot O&G Ltd.
Press Release
Thursday, April 05, 2012

Chariot Oil & Gas Limited announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Enigma Oil & Gas Exploration (Pty) Limited, has commenced drilling the first well, 1811/5-1, of its 4 to 5 well drilling program offshore Namibia. Drilling operations began this morning on the Tapir South prospect using the Maersk Deliverer (UDW semisub) drilling rig, with Chariot as Operator.

The prospect has a 25 percent Chance of Success and a mean un-risked prospective resource potential of 604 million barrels of oil. In the event of success, the results of this well will significantly increase the Chance of Success on certain of the Company’s other prospects within the Tapir Trend.

Tapir South (1811/5-1) will be only the second well ever to be drilled in the Namibe Basin. It is located 49.7 miles (80 kilometers) offshore Namibia in the Company’s northern block 1811A, in which Chariot has a 100 percent equity interest. The well is being drilled to an estimated total vertical depth subsea of 16,732 feet (5,100 meters) and, as announced following the Placing of March 20, 2012, this will now include extended drilling time to ensure that one of the deeper identified targets is drilled and fully evaluated. This deeper target is believed to be a carbonate section, age equivalent to the reservoir in recent sub-salt discoveries in the on-trend Kwanza basin offshore Angola. The drilling and logging operations are expected to take approximately 70 days and a further announcement will be made when the well results are known.

The Tapir South prospect is part of the Tapir Trend where three prospects have been identified on a large ridge formed by a rotated fault block containing the potential carbonate target, draped by deep marine sediments with turbidite sandstone levels forming a stack of overlying targets. Tapir South is the southernmost of three culminations on the ridge and forms a focal point for charge migration from an adjacent basin in which excellent oil prone source rocks are believed to be present and currently generating oil.

The second well to be drilled in the Chariot exploration program, Kabeljou (2714/6-1), targeting the Nimrod prospect is now likely to spud earlier than previously reported. The Operator has informed Chariot that it now expects to secure a drilling unit in 3Q 2012.

“We are very pleased to announce the spud of our Tapir South well in the northern license area which marks that start of a 4-5 well drill program running through to the end of 2013. The results of this first well will be invaluable to furthering our knowledge and understanding of the Namibe basin. Owing to the additional funding raised last month we can now fully explore the deeper targets within the prospect and we look forward to updating the market with the well results in due course,” commented CEO Paul Welch.


Namibia: Spectrum Starts Seismic Survey in Luderitz Basin


Spectrum, in partnership with the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (NAMCOR), has commenced a new project in the Luderitz basin following the successful completion of an extended 2D Multi-Client seismic survey covering the deep water Orange Basin, offshore Namibia.

The Orange Basin program acquisition has been completed with additional lines now extending the program to over 8,000 km of long offset data. The vessel has now commenced a new regional program in the Luderitz Basin consisting of 4,400 km plus a potential infill of 1,200 km.

Seabird Exploration is providing the acquisition services through their Northern Explorer vessel which performed exceptionally well during January and February. Nearly 4,000 km of high quality data was acquired in February and the extended survey was completed ahead of schedule. Further prefunding has enabled Spectrum to add additional lines to the Orange Basin program and to commence the new Luderitz Basin survey.

There is considerable attention in the area at this time. The new survey is located immediately between the recently announced BP farm-in to the Serica 2513 A&B blocks and the potential in the Petrobras/BP/Chariot 2714A block. Very little seismic data is available over these blocks  and Spectrum’s survey will provide both Operators and potential Partners with a good quality regional dataset to evaluate this almost unexplored area.

The Orange Basin survey is now in processing with final deliverables expected to be available in June 2012. The Luderitz basin survey will be available in August.

Over 35,000 km of high-quality 2D multi-client data is now available through Spectrum from offshore Namibia in ten individual surveys. Each survey has been designed to target key plays within the offshore area. The data vintages range from the 1989 regional survey, through to detailed block specific surveys including the 2003 survey acquired around the Ondjou prospect in the northern Walvis Basin. There is also a comprehensive suite of surveys around the Kudu field, as well as covering the Orange and Luderitz Basins.


Namibia: BP Joins Serica in Exploration Offshore Namibia


Serica Energy plc announces that, subject to the consent of the Ministry of Mines and Energy in Namibia, BP will be joining Serica in the exploration of Licence 0047 offshore Namibia by farming-in to Serica’s interest.

The Licence, comprising Blocks 2512A, 2513A, 2513B and 2612A (part), was recently awarded to Serica Energy Namibia B.V. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Serica) and covers an area of approximately 17,400 square kilometres in the deep water central Luderitz Basin. Serica currently has an 85% interest in the blocks. Its partners are the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (Pty) Limited (“NAMCOR”) (10%) and Indigenous Energy (Pty) Limited (“IEPL”) (5%). Both NAMCOR’s and IEPL’s interests are carried by Serica for prescribed work programmes.

Under the transaction, BP will pay to Serica a sum covering Serica’s past costs and earn a 30% interest in the Licence by meeting the full cost of an extensive 3D seismic survey. As a result of the farm-out, Serica’s interest in the Licence following completion of the seismic survey will be 55%. Serica has also announced today that it has signed a contract with Polarcus Seismic Limited to acquire up to 4,150 square kilometres of 3D seismic across the Licence .

The deep water geological basins offshore Namibia, including the Luderitz Basin, are at the early frontier stage of exploration. Although the presence of very large structures have been shown to exist from seismic surveys, very few wells have been drilled in the deeper water Namibian basins to date and the full hydrocarbon potential of the area has not yet been fully tested. Water depths in Serica’s Luderitz Basin blocks range from 300 to 3,000 metres. Drilling in these depths of water, whilst becoming more commonplace in the industry, requires sophisticated drilling techniques and equipment and is very costly.

Serica has therefore granted an option for BP to increase its interest in the Licence by meeting the full cost of drilling and testing an exploration well to the Barremian level before the end of the first four year exploration period. In the event that this option is exercised, Serica’s interest in the Licence will be 17.5% carried through the first well, which will have very considerable value if the exploration drilling is successful.

Serica will continue to be the operator of the Licence during the initial seismic period with BP taking over as operator if it exercises its option to drill and test a well.

Tony Craven Walker, Serica’s Chairman and Interim Chief Executive said:

“Serica’s licence interests in the emerging Atlantic margin basins offshore Ireland, Morocco and Namibia are attracting growing industry interest. In Namibia we recognise the benefits of having a partner who brings technical and development expertise to the group to  complement Serica’s early stage exploration capability.

We are therefore very pleased that BP has decided to join Serica and its partners in the exploration of the Luderitz Basin blocks. The blocks, located in the centre of the largely unexplored Luderitz Basin, cover a very large area and contain multiple play types with considerable  potential. We were awarded the blocks only two months ago and, with BP now participating in the exploration effort, we are able to make a very fast start to what is likely to be a considerable and potentially very rewarding exploration programme.”


Recap: Worldwide Field Development News (Mar 9 – Mar 15, 2012)


This week the SubseaIQ team added 9 new projects and updated 27 projects. You can see all the updates made over any time period via the Project Update History search. The latest offshore field develoment news and activities are listed below for your convenience.

S. America – Other & Carib.
Bayfields Hits Oil Offshore Trinidad & Tobago
Mar 13, 2012 – Bayfield Energy has suspended a well as an oil and gas discovery in the Galeota License at the EG8 field offshore Trinidad and Tobago. The well reached a total depth of 8,133 feet (2,479 meters). EG8 was deviated from its surface location towards the southwest area in order to target the crestal area of mapped horizons in the prospective EG2/EG5 Central fault block. The well encountered 10 hydrocarbon-bearing sandstone reservoir zones between 1,364 feet (416 meters) and 6,000 feet (1,829 meters) below mean sea level. Preliminary analysis indicates that the vertical thickness of net hydrocarbon-bearing sands total 421 feet (128 meters) of which 352 feet (107 meters) is gas and 69 feet (21 meters) is oil. A comprehensive program of logging and sampling was conducted, samples of oil were collected and a mini drill stem test was performed during the analysis. The data confirms light oil and a good quality reservoir with production potential of over 1,000 bopd. Samples of gas and gas condensate were also collected in other reservoirs. Bayfield is currently integrating the new well data into the 3D seismic mapping to study the impact on contingent and prospective resources. Bayfield believes that EG8 has demonstrated development potential of 32 MMbbls of oil and 69 Bcf of gas in the EG2/EG5/EG8 Central and East fault blocks. The jackup Rowan Gorilla III (450′ ILC), which is currently suspending the well, will move to the EG7 location to drill the second well in the company’s exploration and appraisal drilling program in the Galeota license.
Project Details: EG8
Africa – West
BP Enters Serica-Operated License Offshore Namibia
Mar 15, 2012 – BP will farm-in to Serica Energy’s License 0047, offshore Namibia, subject to the consent of the Ministry of Mines and Energy in Namibia, in the exploration of License 0047 offshore Namibia by farming-in to Serica???s interest. The license, comprising Blocks 2512A, 2513A, 2513B and 2612A (part), was recently awarded to Serica Energy Namibia B.V. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Serica) and covers an area of approximately 4.2 million acres (17,400 square kilometers) in the deep water central Luderitz Basin. Serica currently has an 85 percent interest in the blocks. Its partners are the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia Limited (10 percent) and Indigenous Energy Limited (5 percent). Under the agreement, BP will pay Serica a sum covering Serica’s past costs and earn a 30 percent interest in the license by meeting the full cost of an extensive 3D seismic survey. As a result of the farm-out, Serica’s interest in the license following completion of the seismic survey will be 55 percent. Serica has also signed a contract with Polarcus Seismic Limited to acquire up to 1 million acres (4,150 square kilometers) of 3D seismic across the license.
Rialto Energy Spuds Gazelle Well
Mar 13, 2012 – Rialto Energy has spud the Gazelle-P3 production well on the CI-202 Block offshore Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa. The operator is using the jackup GSF Monitor (350′ ILC) for the drilling operations. The well has a planned total depth of about 11,155 feet (3,400 meters) and is expected to take around 60 to 70 days to drill and test. The well is the first of a three-well drilling program on CI-202. It is expected to take six months to complete including testing. The Gazelle-P3 well, which will be drilled from the Gazelle subsea template, will be drilled as a deviated hole targeting already tested sands over the Upper Cenomanian reservoirs. It will be deepened to test a combined structural/stratigraphic trap in the Lower Cenomanian section. The well is situated on the northern flank of the Gazelle structure.
Project Details: Gazelle
N. America – US GOM
First Subsea to Supply Mooring Line Connectors for Lucius Spar
Mar 15, 2012 – First Subsea received a contract from Technip to supply the mooring line connectors for a new spar platform moored in 7,000 feet (2,134 meters) of water in the Lucius field, located at the Keathley Canyon Block 875 in the Gulf of Mexico. The Lucius spar will be moored by nine Ballgrab ball and taper mooring connectors attached to polyester mooring lines. The field is currently under development with first production slated for 2014.
Project Details: Lucius
Anadarko Turns on Caesar/Tonga Taps in Deepwater GOM
Mar 12, 2012 – Anadarko commenced production at the Caesar/Tonga joint development in the Green Canyon area of the deepwater GOM on March 7, 2012. Production from Caesar/Tonga, with an estimated resource base of 200 to 400 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe), is expected to ramp up to approximately 45,000 boepd from the first three subsea wells. A fourth development well is expected to be drilled and completed later this year, as part of the planned phase I development. The subsea satellite wells are tied-back to the Constitution Spar floating production facility.
Project Details: Constitution
MidEast – Red Sea
BP Commences Production in Gulf of Suez
Mar 13, 2012 – Oil production has commenced from the NS377 field at Beach’s North Shadwan concession with oil flowing via a tie-in to Petrobel’s nearby Ras Ghara oil facility and then by pipeline to the main Petreco Oil Centre at Abu Rudeis. The oil from the NS377 oilfield will be treated at the Ras Ghara plant before being piped to the main Petreco Oil Centre and marine terminal, 75 miles (120 kilometers) to the north. Initial production via the pipeline will be restricted to approximately 1,000 bopd with further production from the NS377 field to be handled via a trucking operation, which is expected to commence in 2Q 2012.
Project Details: NS377
Africa – Other
Anadarko Successfully Completes Well Test at Barquentine
Mar 12, 2012 – Anadarko reported that the Barquentine-2 well flowed gas at an equipment-constrained rate of between 90 and 100 million cubic feet per day. The company said that test data supports potential unconstrained flow rates of up to 200 MMcf/d. The Barquentine-2 well is located in a water depth of approximately 5,400 feet (1,646 meters). The drillstem test was conducted by the Deepwater Millennium (DW drillship), which is set to move to the Barquentine-1 location for a second flow and interference test in the complex.
Project Details: Barquentine
S. America – Brazil
Chevron Suspends Ops at Frade Field
Mar 15, 2012 – Chevron has requested authorization for a temporary suspension of field production operations at the Frade field in the Campos Basin in Brazil. The decision to request the shut-in is a precautionary measure based on the company identifying a small new seep in the field and in the area. The company will conduct a comprehensive technical study and prepare a complementary study to better understand the geological features of the area, working with their partners and seeking necessary approvals from National Petroleum Agency (ANP). The company has filed its request before the appropriate regulatory agencies and anticipates a response in a short timeframe. The Frade field currently produces a total of approximately 60,000 barrels per day.
Project Details: Frade
Petrobras Finds Oil at Nordeste de Tupi
Mar 9, 2012 – Petrobras has successfully drilled a well in an area known as Nordeste de Tupi, located northeast of the Lula field. The well was drilled in 6,991 feet (2,131 meters) of water about 158 miles (255 kilometers) offshore Rio de Janeiro. An oil column of more than 951 feet (290 meters) was identified in carbonate pre-salt reservoirs. Well tests show the reserve contains oil rated at 26 degrees API. The operator is planning to perform a well-formation test to evaluate the well’s productivity after drilling is completed. Petrobras is accelerating development of the pre-salt fields, with plans to invest $255 billion through 2014 to increase crude oil output, reported Dow Jones Newswires.
Europe – North Sea
Wintershall Plans to Appraise Hibonite Discovery
Mar 15, 2012 – Wintershall is planning to drill an exploration well at its Hibonite discovery in the Danish North Sea. Hibonite is located on Block 4/06, which Wintershall operates with a 35 percent stake.
Providence Reports Successful Flow Test at Barryroe
Mar 15, 2012 – Providence Resources has successfully flowed oil and gas at its Barryroe appraisal well, offshore southern Ireland. A 24-foot (7-meter) thick net pay interval in the oil bearing basal Wealden sandstone section was perforated as the first phase of the well testing program. Stabilized flow rates of 3,514 bopd and 2.9 MMcf/d (4,000 boepd) were achieved through a 68/64-inch choke with a well head pressure of 517 pounds per square inch without the use of an artificial lift. Analysis has confirmed that the oil is light with a gravity of 42-degree API and a wax content of 20 percent. The 48/24-10z Barryroe appraisal well is located in around 320 feet (100 meter) water depth, approximately 30 miles (50 kilometers) offshore Ireland at the Standard Exploration License (SEL) 1/11 in the North Celtic Sea Basin.
Project Details: Barryroe
Taqa Bratani to Commence Drilling Program in North Sea
Mar 15, 2012 – Taqa Bratani is gearing up to commence an exploratory drilling program in the North Sea, which includes exploration wells on the Timone, Contender, Cladhan and Darwin prospects. The company has contracted the Transocean John Shaw (mid-water semisub) for the drilling program. Taqa also has platform-based rigs, and after working on Tern its drilling crew is to move to the North Cormorant field.
Project Details: Contender
Aker to Design World’s Largest Spar Platform for Luva Development
Mar 15, 2012 – Aker Solutions has received a FEED contract from Statoil to design the world’s largest spar platform for the Aasta Hansteen (formerly Luva) field in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea. With a total hull length of 633 feet (193 meters) and a draught of 558 feet (170 meters), the Aasta Hansteen spar platform is a cylinder shaped floating offshore installation. Aasta Hansteen will be the first spar platform on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS), and also the world’s first Spar platform with condensate storage capacity – a so called belly-spar, stated Aker. The FEED study will be completed in the third quarter of 2012. The development concept will include two subsea templates with four wells on each and one satellite template with one well. The field is currently under development with first oil slated for 2014.
Project Details: Luva
Statoil Shuts-in Statfjord C
Mar 15, 2012 – Statoil has shut-in production at the Statfjord C platform in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea following a gas leak. The leak of the poisonous and flammable gas hydrogen sulfide, H2S, happened in a utility shaft, and was identified as a flange to the wall against a storage cell. Statfjord C is one of several platforms in the greater Statfjord area, and produces about 25,000 boepd.
Project Details: Statfjord Area
Ocean Installer Receives LOI for Bentley Export Oil Pipelines
Mar 13, 2012 – Ocean Installer received a letter of intent from Xcite Resources for the installation of two oil export pipelines from the jackup Rowan Norway (400′ ILC) to a shuttle tanker. Work will commence in April 2012 using the subcontracted vessel from Reef Subsea Power and Umbilical. The operator is beginning step 1A of its planned development program for Bentley. The first phase of development compromises one production well with two laterals, producing across the jackup through a process kit to degas and stabilize the crude, prior to pipeline transfer to a dynamically positioned shuttle tanker.
Project Details: Bentley
Hertel to Construct Additional Living Quarters for Buzzard Platform
Mar 13, 2012 – Hertel’s offshore division received a contract to design, build and modify living quarters on Nexen Petroleum’s Buzzard platform in the UK sector of the North Sea. The contract includes engineering, procurement and construction of living quarters for an additional 60 people, which will increase the onboard capacity of the platform to 180. Fabrication began at the end of February 2012. The Buzzard oil and gas field commenced production on Jan. 7, 2007.
Project Details: Buzzard
RWE Dea Acquires 10 Percent Stake in PL 418
Mar 12, 2012 – RWE Dea has entered into an agreement with Wintershall to acquire 10 percent equity in Production License 418 in the North Sea. The first well (35/9-7) in PL 418 will test the hydrocarbon potential of the Skarfjell prospect. Under the new interest holders, Wintershall will hold a 35 percent operating interest. Partners will include Bayerngas (20%), Agora (20%), Edison (15%) and RWE Dea (10%).
NPD Gives Noreco Thumbs Up to Drill Eik Prospect
Mar 9, 2012 – The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate has awarded Noreco a drilling permit for well 7228/1-1 on the Eik prospect in the North Sea. The well will be drilled using the Transocean Barents (UDW semisub) in Production License 396.
Project Details: Eik


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